Christmas Festival Weekend 2018

14th-16th December, 2018

12th Terrific Year



Christmas tree in churchSt. Anne’s Church East Wittering welcomed a considerable number of local visitors and many from further afield, undeterred by the bad weather, to its 12th Christmas Festival Weekend.

Contributors of Christmas trees, 52 in total, excelled themselves in the creativity of their decorations representing their families, charities, organizations and businesses. The beautifully adorned church and trees were much admired. Visitors throughout the weekend enjoyed a children’s trail. Tickets were bought for a ‘lucky dip’ bran tub and a hamper. The winner of this very generously donated all of the contents to Stonepillow, the charity supporting the homeless In Chichester, 200 this year alone who have accessed their services.

Friday evening saw the return of the very popular wine tasting ‘Call my Bluff’ quiz. Each of three presenters over six rounds described the contents of the bottles on offer for the guests to guess which definition was the most probable. Interspersed with various humorous anecdotes, this was an evening of great fun. Tasty nibbles were served and a raffle took place for a donated bucket of bottles of wines and spirits.

The wet and windy weather on Saturday didn’t seem to have deterred Christmas shoppers and visitors to this traditional Christmas Fair from buying from the selection of goods on offer from stalls selling home-made local produce, cakes, marmalades, preserves, books, jewellery, crafts, ‘nearly new,’ a bottle tombola, hamper raffle and a ‘human fruit machine.’ Delicious refreshments were served throughout including sandwiches, soups and Fr. Steve’s warming mulled wine.  Festive music from the popular Bracklesham Ukulele Band, and a Grand draw which ended the proceedings, contributed to a very well-attended and successful event.

On Sunday evening St. Anne’s Church was packed for the uplifting Christingle, celebrating its 50th year, and Toy Service. Fr. Steve asked the congregation questions about the various parts of the Christingle and what each represented. He then distributed these, assembled beforehand by a team of St. Anne’s ladies. The Salvation Army played favourite Christmas carols and members collected the vast number of  new toys so generously donated, many having been saved throughout the year, to give  to local families in need. Captain Matt Butler spoke movingly of his journey in life with the Salvation Army and of how he and his fellow members are called to work in areas of much deprivation and need. The collection at the end of the service was for the Children’s Society.

This was yet another most successful and joyful Christmas Festival Weekend at St. Anne’s. It generated much goodwill as well as essential funds for the church, all made possible by the efforts and the huge amount of hard work of so very many kind, helpful and generous-spirited people. Hopefully they will know who they are and how much gratitude is owed to them.

Karen Grunert, publicity contact : St. Anne’s Church 
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